Ideas & Submissions

Practical Prioritization

The prioritized product backlog is core to being agile. A well prioritized backlog allows us to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery

of valuable software. Lean and Kanban may call it something else, but there too, prioritized work is key.

At the same time, prioritizing work is an extremely difficult activity. Internal customers, non-functional requirements, investigations, proof of concepts, and technical dependencies are just some of the types of work that a backlog can contain. How do you know what the business value is of each.

This session will equip novice and experienced Product Owners with the tools to prioritize any backlog, focusing on four key concepts; currencies, opportunity cost of delay, classes of service and types of work.

Each technique will be demonstrated at the hand of real-life examples, gathered through years of Agile Coaching. The same techniques will even help you prioritize that never-ending to-do list at home.


My agile career started in 2002 as practitioner. At the end of 2007 I transitioned to employed agile coach, and since 2009 as consultant / external coach to 12 organizations around the world. I have presented at several Agile and Lean conferences and user group events.



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Idea No. 5